Male NICU nurse

  1. Hey,

    I'm a recent graduate and am beginning my residency in Alaska in the NICU. I just wanted to ask for a bit of advice, namely any tips on being a male and novice nurse in the NICU. I have some insecurities about some potential hardships my gender will produce down the road and I'm wondering how to make the parents feel more at ease. I don't anticipate having problems, as I feel I have a calm and sincere demeanor. I have absolute compassion for what I'm about to do. I currently have about 6 months of experience working with medically fragile children, so I understand this move to the NICU will arise with new difficulties.


    Thanks!
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  2. Visit Callsign Skinny profile page

    About Callsign Skinny

    Joined: Feb '18; Posts: 1
    Specialty: 1 year(s) of experience

    5 Comments

  3. by   Guy in Babyland
    Quote from Callsign Skinny
    I have some insecurities about some potential hardships my gender will produce down the road and I'm wondering how to make the parents feel more at ease.
    What kind of insecurities do you anticipate? I have not had any issues with being male in the NICU. As long as you can do your job and take care of their baby, parents could care less if you are male or female. There are only two areas that mothers may have an issue with you being male: breastfeeding and "kangaroo care"/ skin to skin contact. I work dayshift, so any breastfeeding issues are referred to our lactation consultants. As for kangaroo care, I have helped numerous mothers "kangaroo" their baby without the mothers having an issue with me being male. All they care about is being able to do skin to skin contact with their baby. They don't see me as a male nurse. They see me as a nurse.

    My best advice is not to worry about being male and concentrate being the best nurse you can be. Being male is truly a non-issue.
  4. by   xdednrt
    I haven't had any issues being a male in the NICU. Just remain professional and remember that you are dealing with not only babies in a fragile state but also parents who are going through a very difficult time. In the end, as long as you are caring for their baby, most parents just see you as a nurse and not a gender.

    You'll do great!
  5. by   Jokerhill
    I have never had a problem with it and another male NICU nurse friend had a news article about him a little bit ago. A local politician had a baby and he was thanked by her for helping her with breastfeeding. When they see your a competent and that they need you, male or female no longer matters. Have a great day and better tomorrow.
  6. by   Leader25
    I see no issues except parents from certain male dominated cultures will not want you near their wife or wives for kangaroo care or breastfeeding.Take no offense and move on to the next patient.
  7. by   Jokerhill
    Quote from Leader25
    I see no issues except parents from certain male dominated cultures will not want you near their wife or wives for kangaroo care or breastfeeding.Take no offense and move on to the next patient.
    You are right I am corrected, but I don't think of this as a male/female issue its a cultural one. I agree move on when you can, I have been called to bad delivery's before, and asked to leave by the woman's family. They were informed that the baby may die or suffer irreversible harm and I was the best person to keep that from happening. They agreed and I stayed, retreated as soon as I could.

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